The following Letter to the Editor was published today, April 27, 2018 in the Kansas City Star. I wrote it after reading the tribute to Barbara Bush on April 21. The essay/editorial struck a cord that is worthy of noting. Please read. Thank you to the KC Star for including it in today’s edition.
Mary Sanchez’s sympathetic and empathetic column concerning Barbara Bush is a testimony to the strength of character not only of Mrs. Bush, but her mom and all of us who experience the loss a child. (April 21, 11A, “Remembering Barbara Bush, grieving mother”)
My experience was a miscarriage of twins. But that was half a century after Robin Bush’s death and Sanchez’s mother’s first late-term loss. I was fortunate to have a community that understood it was a loss and allowed me to grieve.
Another generation later, our daughter-in-law lost a daughter, Faith, at 17 weeks. Fortunately, she was supported by a medical team that understood the need to allow her and her husband time with the daughter.
Loss is painful, but grieving is a process that one must experience, and a medical team that understands that need is exceptional.
Sanchez’s words and her insight concerning Mrs. Bush are evidence that our culture is learning to honor painful life experiences appropriately. Thank you for sharing such a personal and perceptive tribute to Mrs. Bush, but also to your own mom and all mothers who know the loss of a child all too soon.
Susan Annette Smith Warrensburg
Today we celebrate, not mourn, the life of one of the strongest women who served as First Lady. Interesting, that her station in life propelled a personal passion forward that seldom gets the focus so needed–dyslexia.
Having the opportunity to hear her talk at an Orton Dyslexia Society conference (now the International Dyslexia Association), I continued to push students to learn how to read and to write despite the difficulties they faced as dyslexic.
One of my personal drives was to be passionate that all students can learn to read and to write even if they were dyslexic. The work that I have done to teach dyslexics was energized when I listened to Barbara Bush. Her style, her honestly and her passion made such an impression on me that day.
As I watched Jenna Bush-Hagar battle the tears yesterday morning, I could only empathize with her impending sense of loss, but more importantly her pride in her grandmother. Over the past few years watching Jenna, yes I want to just call her Jenna as a friend, I see the beauty and the passion of her grandmother shining through her, too.
Sometimes we get so bombarded by the polished images of public figures, esp. in the entertainment industry, we become jaded. Barbara Bush was real and I believe her genuineness is reflected by those in her family who follow their passions and try to model their grandmother, their mother, their mother-in-law, their aunt, and their friend. We should all be so fortunate to have that type of influence in our lives.
Thank you, Barbara Bush, for the grand woman that you are. You live even though you are no longer in our world. Thank you for the work you did in such a classy manner. I know you have and will light the fire in those who knew and will learn who you are.Barbara Bush: Passionate Leader